Friday 25th July 2013: Coniston, The Lake District

It is hard to believe after a difficult and very tiring 12 months, that I am sat beside the peace and beauty of Lake Coniston enjoying a glass of cool, crisp Chenin Blanc whilst watching my children play by its lapping shore and observing Rob savour a pint of the Lake District's finest beer and navigating a fishing net at the same time.

Even harder to believe is that exactly one week ago I had my work leaving/birthday party and swore I would never touch a drop of alcohol again. I've not been out partying like that for 5 years and on the basis of how I have felt over the last week, it is clear that I will need another 5 years to build the stamina for an evening as epic as last Friday.

Mind you, I will be 40 and based on the fact that it took me 3 days to recover this time (one day for each major organ), goodness knows how long it would take for me to re-hydrate myself after the big 4-0.

It really is the sublime to the ridiculous. 

As much as I loved the partying, the peacefulness of the lakes and the soulful rest that they bring, is my idea of bliss. Being here with my beautiful family and seeing how happy our children are at the fact that they have their parents to themselves for a whole week, is as overwhelming as the lakes and mountains themselves. 

Don't get me wrong, camping has been fun this year; however, I have also found it quite stressful. Trying to get James to stop pole dancing around the gas canister that we use for cooking whilst holding the huge camping lighter is a tad nerve-wracking. I feel like I either need CCTV placed around the tent or I need to get James tagged. Neither of which I associate with a relaxing holiday. we are all paddling around the Lake where Donald Campbell felt it was a good idea to attempt the water-speed record in the 1960's, there is a sense of calm that I haven't experienced with James whilst sleeping under canvas.

Rob is enthralled with the Donald Campbell story. Nevertheless, I could have told Mr Campbell that travelling across the Lake at over 300MPH in a blue vehicle that resembled the green Thunderbirds 2 aircraft, would end in tears. 

However, as I watch Rob sip his 'Bluebird' Bitter, it dawns on me that who am I too add pragmatism to the legend that was Donald Campbell.

Above: Splashing good fun at Lake Coniston